The Bears acquired Keenan Allen late Thursday night for a fourth-round draft pick, calling on a Charger organization forced to clear as much cap space as possible.

Allen will turn 32 years old this April and only had one remaining year on his current contract, so this was a move that made sense from both sides.

The Bears also used the fourth-round pick they acquired from the Eagles last season when swapping the No. 9 and No. 10 picks.

As noted, Allen is climbing into the 11th hour of his career, but the Bears are still getting a hyper-productive player in return.

Allen is coming off catching a career-high 108 balls in 2023 for 1,243 yards and seven touchdowns while missing four games.

The addition of Allen now gives Chicago the best one-two punch at wide receiver since Brandon Marshall and Alshon Jeffery.

Keep track of every important signing in our 2024 Free Agency Tracker

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Keenan Allen & D.J. Moore 2024 Fantasy Football Outlook

Both Keenan Allen and D.J. Moore were inside the top 10 in fantasy points per game last season.

Keenan Allen vs. D.J. Moore in 2023

CategoryAllenRankMooreRank
Routes/Gm40.3134.820
Targets/Gm11.518.018
Targets/Route28.6%423.0%31
Rec./Gm8.315.714
ReYd/Gm95.6480.212
Yards/Route2.37122.3116
ReTD7T-178T-7
PPR/Gm21.5316.99

Allen was inside of the top four wide receivers in several areas above.

His counting stats were inflated a bit by the number of routes he ran paired with the absence of Mike Williams, but this is a player who could still produce when given target opportunities.

Moore is coming off his best season, posting career-highs with 96 receptions for 1,364 yards and nine total touchdowns.

It should also be stated how well these players fit together on the football field given where each of them wins.

In 2023, Moore played 80.6% of his snaps out wide and 18.6% in the slot.

Allen played 58.2% of his snaps in the slot compared to 41.0% outside.

Moore has struggled versus zone coverage while Allen has thrived.

Allen has struggled a bit more against man coverage at this stage of his career whereas Moore has smoked man coverage.

In 2023, Moore was fourth among all wide receivers in yards per route run against man coverage (3.88). In 2022, he was WR17 in that area (2.54).

Against zone coverage, however, Moore ranked 34th in 2023 (1.86) and 46th in 2022 (1.60).

Moore has never had a season yet in his career where he has averaged more yards per route run against zone coverage than man coverage.

Allen on the other hand was the inverse.

This past season, he was 10th among receivers in yards per route run against zone coverage (2.57) and 13th in that department in 2022 (2.23).

But against man coverage, Allen was 30th in 2023 (2.14) and 29th in 2022 (2.13).

Allen has not been inside the top 25 wideouts in yards per route run against man in any of the past five seasons.

On the field, this is a tremendous mesh.

Looking at what Moore did versus where he ranked in several usage areas, he showed how a good player can outkick his projected opportunity.

That is where this new pairing becomes interesting from a fantasy angle.

Whereas Allen was elevated from one of the highest usage rates at the position, Moore out-produced expectations and now will concede opportunities in 2023.

Moore was the WR23 in expected points per game for fantasy, which aligns with most of the usage ranks you see above.

Moore was the WR10 in current fantasy drafts, which was already fragile based on his 2023 usage rates.

Gamers were surely anticipating the potential addition of a rookie wide receiver, but Allen is someone who will command targets.

The addition of Allen also does not prevent Chicago from adding another front-end wide receiver with one of their two picks inside the top 10, but we should still anticipate them selecting a wideout in April given that Allen is a short-term addition.

Gamers were already operating with some trepidation about Allen based on his age and situation. Age 32 has always been a firewall at wide receiver where all bets are off, even for productive players.

I believe Allen’s cost is more or less fair moving to Chicago, but we need the Bears to be a much more aggressive offense in 2024 to insulate Moore’s draft cost if it does not slide too far.

The Bears were 28th in the NFL in dropback rate last season (56.3%) but have made a transition by hiring Shane Waldron as their new offensive coordinator.

Waldron is the one branch from the Sean McVay tree that we have not seen deploy a high usage of 3WR sets, but his Seattle offenses were still far more aggressive than what Chicago has put on the field.

Over the past three years in Seattle, Waldron’s offenses were right in line with the game script. The Seahawks ended those seasons 1%, 2%, and -1% compared to pass rate expectations.

The Bears over those seasons have been -4%, -13%, and -2% compared to pass rate expectations.

That was also with Justin Fields as their quarterback.

We are still expecting the Bears to use the No. 1 pick in this draft on a quarterback, but as of right now, Fields is still on the roster.

If Fields is the quarterback, that does make it hard to bet on a major passing spike occurring within this offense.

That said, the Chicago QB1 is the primary winner here for fantasy.

Even if it were to be Fields, we already know what we have in him from a fantasy stance as a rusher and ceiling breaker despite his real-life shortcomings.

Fields has nine weeks as a top-five scoring fantasy quarterback over the past two seasons (five in 2023).

If the Bears do use the No. 1 pick on a quarterback, that player is going to be someone I want to take swings on, especially in these early best ball drafts as a QB2.

Even before the addition of Allen, I noted that this is far from the situation we typically see No. 1 rookie picks enter the league with.

I will not enter the year expecting what C.J. Stroud did in 2023 to be the bar for rookie quarterback expectations, but if that No. 1 pick ends up being Caleb Williams, then I expect him to jump guys like Trevor Lawrence, Fields (by default), and Justin Herbert in current ADP.

Los Angeles Chargers 2024 Fantasy Football Outlook

That brings us to the other side of the trade here.

With the Chargers turning over multiple stones in getting under the cap and calibrating the roster under their new regime, the offensive cupboard is looking bare for Justin Herbert.

The Chargers have stated that they would like to bring Mike Williams back, but as we sit right now, Herbert is now without Allen, Williams, Austin Ekeler, and Gerald Everett as pass catchers he relied on.

His splits with and without Williams and Allen over the past two seasons have been stark.

Justin Herbert Based on WR Availability 2022-2023

Justin HerbertDBEPA/DBComp%Y/AaDOTTD%
With Both2780.2176.0%8.07.33.9%
W/o Allen4270.0364.8%6.36.44.0%
W/o Williams7110.0264.5%6.46.94.0%
W/o Both1420.0865.9%5.65.94.5%

Herbert has only had 142 dropbacks without both Allen and Williams on the field, but his rate stats plummet outside of his touchdown rate.

If you scope the table above, you also will see that Herbert’s yards per pass attempt is higher than his air yards per pass attempt only in the split in which he had both Allen and Williams on the field together.

His 5.6 yards per pass attempt over the past two years with both off the field ranks 37th in the league.

The Chargers must add some talent to their receiver room.

The positive news is that they do hold the No. 5 and No. 37 picks in this draft to do just that.

The downside is that they just used the 21st pick last season on a player who underwhelmed in year one.

Quentin Johnston Rookie Ranks

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